When Your Pets Become Ghosts

Optional Audio Transcript

On this website, you read quite a bit about human ghosts. They really are everywhere, and it does end up becoming a little bit boring. Humans as ghosts can get fascinating, but that isn’t all there is out there. Life just hits different when your pets become ghosts. They can’t really tell you how they felt. You grieve and somehow am still okay with getting another one.

As I was taking notes for my somehow continuous dream series, tragedy struck my family home.

It was one that even you have dealt with before, if you’ve ever had animals. They live much shorter lives than we do, and we see their death more often. Of course, I had a realization about a strange phenomenon around animal deaths in my family. Each one contained a significance to their deaths.

Something happened on their death day that made me wonder how folks still don’t really believe in the afterlife, or another realm. Or, at least, our minds telling us that the end is near for our furry friends.

Or not furry. I’m not shaming snakes or anything. And this is something more than just animals dying, like elephants.

The story of Pixie

My mother has a dog named Pixie, a 15-year-old chihuahua who started having troubles. They spent thousands of dollars on this pup to make sure she lives forever. Unfortunately, after finding a very troubling heart murmur too late, Pixie died on Thanksgiving.

Pixie, when pets become ghosts

Now we knew that she was going to die soon, but not as quickly as she did. She lost motor function in a matter of days and by the time we got to the animal hospital the second time, she was in congestive heart failure. It turns out, what she was being treated for was not what was wrong with her. Now, I do not blame the veterinarians on this one. I would have thought the same thing.

We figured once a chihuahua starts having trachea problems, they have just a couple of years left. You can fix the trachea, but it will be costly. We knew she had a heart murmur but was told it was not a problem. They both have a cough associated with them.

Dreaming about how your pets become ghosts

Yeah, you knew a dream was coming with at least one of these stories. Additionally, you should always expect a dream associated with death at this point as it is not uncommon to witness. The night before Thanksgiving, I had a dream about Pixie. I never really dream about my pets. It is usually monsters or people.

So, in this dream, we were all playing with pixie in the living room. She was different, though. I never saw Pixie as a puppy, so in my mind, she was just about 2-4 years old. She was small, as chihuahuas are, and full of energy. She didn’t have her old age showing through her fur. It was just a small, young dog playing with her humans.

When I woke up and was told we needed to go to the vet, I knew instantly that Pixie was not coming home alive with us. In my mind, she was still that young pup running around the living room, excited to live her life to the fullest.

She is buried in our pet cemetery.

Yes, we have a pet cemetery.

The story of Little Man

Little Man is another chihuahua that lived in the home. When I showed up to the farm, Little Man was already an old dog. He had the same trachea problem that Pixie was supposed to have. Small dogs get this problem as they age, so it was expected. Little Man was a rescue and lived a full life doing more than any other dog I’ve met.

When he died, though, he stayed around. You can argue about ghosts existing all day long, but when you have a cold spot on the bed where your dead dog used to sleep, you get a little bit curious. My family still thinks Little Man is around, running down the halls, burrowing in quilts, and sleeping in the same spot he always slept in.

Little Man, when pets become ghosts
Little Man

While I am still a skeptic about ghostly things, my family is worse about it. While they believe in ghosts, it is more on superstition than anything else. Little Man hanging around the house is heartwarming. I’d hate to think, though, of if every animal we have being around us, though. That’s a lot of dead birds over the years.

Little Man is also buried in the pet cemetery.

The story of Mr. Crowley

Why yes, I did name my cat after an Ozzy Osbourne song. Crowley was an injured kitten dropped off at the house by my stepsister, who said she found the kitten on the side of the road.

And then she left us with the kitten.

Mr. Crowley, when pets become ghosts
Mr. Crowley

You’d think the kitten was abandoned, and you’d be right. Our thoughts were that he was hit by a car while trying to find his family. His visits to the vet were very costly, but I was determined to get this cat back to living. It was thought that he was around 3 months old. His hip was injured and he ended up having a megacolon.

Witnessing when your pets become ghosts

It was a rough time trying to get him back to a normal state and that normal state never did happen. After multiple trips to vets around the area, one thing was certain: Mr. Crowley was never going to live past one year old. He couldn’t walk anymore. His medication was only helping one problem.

Mr. Crowley was going to die from a hip fracture that healed the wrong way. He was also older than the original vet had put him, more so at 7 months old. I had him for about a month at this point. The hip surgery was not available in my area and cost about $5,000 if there were no complications. It also had a low success rate.

This poor kitten was not going to make it long enough for a consult and schedule of his hip and he was finally put to sleep to put him out of his misery. While the procedure was happening, the light above the operating table flickered off and on right as he died. The veterinarian said that had never happened before.

Cremated cats, when pets become ghosts
The cremated cat crew

Mr. Crowley was cremated and sits with my other cat, 21-year-old Jasmine, on my bookshelf.

Your pets become ghosts for many reasons

No one wants to see their pets become ghosts. It is a heartbreak that you never want to experience. They are family and watching them age and die is no matter you ever want to go through. What you can do otherwise is spend your time loving what loves you.

They may come back to visit because they do love you that much. Otherwise, they may just have died so quickly that they think they are still the same old dog from the before. Much like with human ghosts, the idea of knowing that your pets become ghosts to stick around is kind of heartwarming. Humans in the afterlife may have more reasons, but animals don’t need those.

I am waiting to see if Pixie is our next ghost in the house. How she went was tragic, but she could very well hang out more in the home.

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